Although the interview was recorded before his match at ‘Mania 38, Zayn mentioned how his experience working a seminar in Sweden for the WWE taught him how to handle matches with celebrities. The former Intercontinental Champion also spoke about the ways that working with a celebrity guest changed the way he could set up the build for WrestleMania.
“It made me have to break down the business to the most basic, fundamental, I don’t even want to call it rules, but parameters,” Zayn said. “Let’s talk about a good guy, what’s a good guy? What’s a bad guy? So when you have to articulate that, you re-educate yourself because we get on the handsome wheel ourselves, especially on the independents of doing that independent, Ring of Honor style.
“You start to see the business this one way, catering to one kind of fan, and then I have to take a step back and look at the business from the ground up, and I’m like, what is a good guy? What is a bad guy? What are we even doing in this ring? What is the point of even getting in this ring? What are we trying to get out of the fans?
“We’re trying to make them feel things, we’re trying to take them on a ride. So I re-educated myself and all these lightbulbs started going off for me, also the egos, like damn, I know a lot, I’m good. With Logan [Paul] and Knoxville, one of those things that the ego enjoys is, damn, I know a lot and I only realize how much I know when I have to explain it to someone who knows zero.
“Not only that, they’re great performers in their own right so I like bouncing off [of them], especially Knoxville because he’s so creative. Some of the stuff we’ve done, what I’ve really loved about it is building a story to a WrestleMania match in a way that you couldn’t with any other WWE superstar. There’s no other WWE superstar on the roster where the way we’re going to build our WrestleMania match is. I’m going to go to a movie premiere or he’s going to fly my phone number over Los Angeles.”
Unfortunately for Zayn, he lost his match against Knoxville at WrestleMania 38 after his Jackass co-stars assisted him in defeating the WWE star. Sami Zayn continued to talk about his match with Johnny Knoxville and revealed whether or not he’s watched Jackass prior to their match.
“No, I could talk terribly about Knoxville all day and if you had more time I would, but I will point the finger at myself here,” Sami Zayn said, on not watching Jackass as a kid. “I will admit to being narrow-minded and missing the point, and it’s ironic because of how much I love wrestling. I thought Jackass was just a bunch of guys getting hurt.
“This is where me and Kevin [Owens] were very opposite, he loves watching videos of people eating it, getting hurt and he just loves it and I don’t. I don’t like watching people get hurt and I thought Jackass was just a bunch of people getting hurt, I don’t want to watch it. I totally missed the point of the appeal of what Jackass was, which was it was about the buddies, and the laughs, and the, ‘I’ll get you and you get me next and we both laugh about it.’
“It’s just fun and I didn’t get it. I never gave it the fair chance. I did watch Jackass Forever and I have watched some old Jackass because I’m scouting my opponent, and I was like, oh man, I totally missed the point. The finger, I point at myself and I’ll admit I was totally wrong about it.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Out of Character with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
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